Sometimes in life we all find ourselves swimming against the current, and that’s okay, as long as we keep swimming!
As long as you do not allow your negative thoughts
and feelings, to drown you to the point that you feel like giving up, then you
will somehow, from somewhere, find that inner strength that you need to bring
you back to shore safely.
Since you once were the strongest swimmer of sperm, please know you have a purpose. You’re luckily unique and yes, the world needs YOU, more than you’ll ever know. You are always loved by a force you’ll never be able to see, hear or always feel. But that love once made you, no matter how you were conceived? And that love is going to find you again, when you have faith, hold on, and believe.
So, when that tidal wave surges towards you full force, keep swimming, no matter what, or float with the current until it weakens. Going with the flow is sometimes the only option.
You can’t stop it, and you can’t control it.
Just keep going through it, or surf the crest of
that wave until you get over it.
Often the hardest thing about my job is, encouraging clients who are feeling down, to stay positive. Especially when they are over coming traumatic events or suffering physically in some way.
But even harder still, is trying to encourage
clients who are feeling down to stay positive, when I am feeling down or going
through a crisis myself.
We all get them days or periods in our life, they
are unavoidable at times.
Yet, they are the times more than anything else,
that require a positive perspective.
Everyone has stress, worries or challenges in their lives, no one is immune, but its attitude that helps us to overcome them.
A negative, defeatist attitude, is never going to help to make things better. In fact, it makes things worse. On the other hand, a positive, ‘I can deal with this and get through it’ attitude’ Will make things seem better, and will in most cases make the outcome better too. This doesn’t mean there will always be a happy ending but it’s never actually what happens to us that’s the problem, it’s how we react or respond to it.
Stuff happens in life to all of us, good and bad. We
just need to start noticing the good more, and not let the bad get the better
I know first- hand that that is easier said than
done, but what are the options?
Feeling sad and miserable, powerless and negatively
defeated, doesn’t bare thinking about, but understandable and naturally normal
at challenging times in our lives.
We can help to decrease those times and increase the good times though. By simply trying to feel positive, motivated and thankful at those ‘normal’ times in our life, when nothing is going wrong, but when we tend to find ourselves worrying about things going wrong, before they have.
This can help us to deal with things, if and when they do actually happen, without that feeling of heavy overwhelm. Stress is not the problem, constant, compounded stress is!
So today I challenge you, in your ordinary day,
full of the usual financial / family/ work/ relationship woes, to be mindful of
all the good already in your life, right now in this moment.
Appreciate if you can, the perfection in the normal,
boring and the mundane?
Be grateful if nothing else for your health. And if your health isn’t all that healthy at the moment, know that feeling bad won’t make you feel better. However, appreciating the fact that we are breathing, is enough when we think of those we have loved, who aren’t any longer.
And as long as we are breathing, and coming up in
between for air, that’s a sign that we’re alive, and things can always get
better in the sea of life!
As a Hypnotherapist, clients often ask
me how they can ignore or switch off their thoughts and feelings?
But as a Therapist, I advise them
never to ignore them, as they are vital and are actually trying to tell us
We don’t want to stop them completely, like we wouldn’t want to stop physical pain, pain prevents us taking a risk too far, for example if we didn’t feel pain when cooking, we could take things out of the oven like we had asbestos fingers, but those fingers wouldn’t end up looking too pretty or lasting very long.
Pain is our signal that something is
wrong and needs our attention. If we ignore physical pain and carry on, it gets
worse and we may miss something that needs medical attention.
The same with our thoughts, over time
constantly ignoring them may lead us down a dark road to depression.
And we certainly don’t want to stop eating food to lose weight, because if we didn’t eat, we’d eventually die of starvation.
But that’s what clients think they
want, to stop feeling the pain, or stop eating to lose weight, or stop thinking
to feel good again.
Truth be told, we simply can’t ignore what we think and feel for long. Unless we listen and make changes, then those thoughts and feelings will persist until we do.
They are so useful in letting us know
things need to change or we do.
Its not a case of eliminating the pain
but addressing it, taking steps to ease the pain, and if possible, removing the
source of the pain, so the pain disappears naturally.
We can’t stop those thoughts completely
Try now not to think of the colour of
your front door.
Its impossible because you have to
think of the thing first, that you don’t want to think about, to consciously
try not to think about it.
Your mind doesn’t differentiate between
the positive and the negative, the do and the don’t gets lost in translation,
it just registers the image of your front door in your mind. Whether you want
that image or not?
And anyone who’s ever gone on a diet
will know that, the one forbidden food you are trying to avoid, is the one
craving that’s driving you insane.
We have to make friends with our thoughts, feelings and pain, and thank them for bringing light to an area we have been trying to ignore for too long. They are, believe it or not, trying to help us?
You can’t always eliminate people from your life, just like pain you have to find out where the pain is coming from and why? Then ease it or remove yourself from the cause of the pain whenever you can.
But how can you make friends with unwanted thoughts, feelings and pain? Especially when they are so negative in nature and hard to understand?
Just like you would any person you wanted to get along with in life, that you didn’t particularly like or understand.
We simply need to listen. Really actively
listen. Give our thoughts, feelings and pain our full attention.
What exactly are they trying to say?
Where are they coming from and why?
What’s caused them to manifest in our lives at
this particular point in time?
THE POWER POSITION
To truly listen we have to become objective.
Listening and observing ourselves from
the outside, like an outsider looking in. Here we’ll discover the lessons our
soul urges us to know or understand.
But we won’t be able to hear anything,
if we identify with ourselves and those thoughts, feelings or pain.
So, we must pretend they are not a
part of us. They are just momentary experiences passing through, that have come
to teach or redirect us in some way?
When we learn how to do this, we neutralise
the emotions attached to our thoughts, feelings and pain.
And from this position, we have the
power to challenge those unwanted, unwarranted, negative thoughts, feelings and
perceived pain produced by the mind and body.
Replacing them with more loving ones, that support positive thoughts, producing good feelings and emotions, and easing some of that physical pain.
Tweeting Out Loud
On Twitter last week I read a tweet that asked;
‘Do you ever want to talk to someone but you feel like you just annoy them so you sit there and don’t say anything and wait and see if they’ll message you first? ………’
And I felt compelled to reply;
‘If you annoy anyone that’s their problem not yours!’
And then I wrote this blog as a
Because what you think of yourself is
your REAL problem.
Luckily though, it’s easier and
possible to change how we think of ourselves but not so easy or even always possible,
to change another person’s mind.
JOURNAL YOUR JOURNEY
Writing down our thoughts and feelings
every day in a journal, is the most beneficial thing we can do.
It may seem like a chore but how badly
do you want to feel good?
I like to do a couple of sentences
before bed each night, and again each morning. This way I recap on my day before
bed, and wake up emptying what I don’t need to carry in my mind throughout my
You don’t have to be good at writing
and no ones going to check your spelling, grammar, punctation or even the content
you’ve written. Its just for you to write, read and reflect back on personally.
It can be one word or one hundred
pages a day. There’s no word counting here.
Just write down basically what you are
thinking and how you are feeling. This can help us process the events of the
day and the interactions we’ve had with others. Writing things down also puts
things into perspective. Things that in the dark of night can keep us awake
with fear and worry, can seem trivial when we wake in the light of day, and write
these thoughts down. Nothing is ever as bad as our mind likes to magnify
Your mind though may resist this new journaling habit, as the minds function is to keep you safe, keep you on alert, and alas, keep your worrying and analysing the past, present and future.
When you write things down, there’s less in your head clouding your judgements. Your mind may worry about losing its control over you and purpose in your life. It’s a faithful friend and servant, but the more friends we make on our journey the merrier, and of course, the easier life becomes. So, introduce your mind to the power of the pen and get those thoughts out of your head and down on paper.
But you can reassure the worrier in
you that, you can still have moments in your day to ruminate over the debris of
your mind, when you re read your journal and reflect on what you’ve written and
what you are going to do about it?
That’s the journals purpose, to show
you patterns in your thoughts and behaviour, highlighting when pain is
heightened or joy expressed?
Keeping a journal of our thoughts and feelings, can really help us to understand and notice all the above, in our daily lives. Writing down each time we over react, feel angry, stressed, anxious, sad, frustrated, happy or calm, and recording the circumstances that led up towards that reaction, will help us to understand, not only our own reactions, but other peoples too. Including how they felt as a result of how we behaved?
That’s why it’s not only good to understand how we feel, but it’s also useful to know how the impact of what we feel, is having on others.
In the heat of the moment, it is hard
to think clearly. On reflection, it’s uncomfortable to see how that has made us
behave, and the impact that has had on other people, especially those we love.
This can be shocking when it’s written down and read after some time has elapsed and we have cooled down, but knowing our motives and why we react as we do, helps us to positively change.
When going about our daily business,
it’s difficult to decipher what and when exactly we react unconsciously? That’s
because much of what we do on a daily basis is unconscious. We live out of
habits. Often responding on auto pilot mode. We are in essence oblivious to
what is going on around us much of the time.
But when we keep a journal, we notice
those responses more and can look for any patterns forming. For example, do we
get angry with our children first thing in the morning when we are in a rush to
get to work, or last thing at night when we are tired and want to relax?
Armed with this knowledge of why and
when, we’re likely to react on Auto Pilot, we can become more aware of when
it’s about to happen?
Noticing ourselves getting to that boiling or breaking point, before we erupt or crumble, allows us time to stop ourselves, and decide not to over react.
Then we can start to shift our focus to a more, conscious in the present moment mode.
THINKING OUT LOUD
Writing down how we feel may not come
easy, but everyone thinks. So, sometimes when I find a brave, courageous soul
in need of help, I ask them for one whole day, to think out loud.
That means instead of hoarding all
that negative, mental chatter in their mind, and tightening their muscles with
physical stress and dis-ease, to say out loud every thought that they are
This is extremely hard, as we are so
used to thinking inside our head, often the automatic habit goes on unnoticed.
But this exercise helps us to stay
present and conscious and to take notice.
It’s good to do when around other
people that we interact with on a daily basis. It’s a bitter honesty pill to
swallow, both for the giver and receiver of the honesty!
If lived this way everyday as some do, not from choice, others from choice, we’d have no friends or family left. I mean, honestly replying to your wife ‘Yes your bum does look big in that dress!’ Never helped any man or woman ever!
So, choose a day to do this ‘Thinking Out Loud’ exercise, when you won’t be in this position if possible?
But this exercise is good because it
means we must either be honest or think nothing at all (which we know, not
thinking is impossible)
This can clearly show us who we no longer need in our lives, because we will try to avoid those people on our ‘Thinking Out Loud Day’ through fear of what we might say aloud to them.
Normally, our emotions usually do this
job for us, they do the talking without us, especially whenever someone makes
us happy or upset. Its illustrated by how angry, upset or happy we react.
But thinking out loud frees our pain, emotions and thoughts, eliminates those negatives we no longer need, and keeps us present in the moment, which in itself, is the best gift to give or receive!
At the end, I just feel a bit deflated. A little sad even. It’s like getting to the end of a good book or film that you wanted to go on forever. The truth is motivation doesn’t last. It’s just like brushing your teeth, it’s a habit you have to acquire over time. You wouldn’t stop brushing your teeth because you couldn’t be bothered though, would you?
Dreams take love, commitment, motivation and dedication.
It’s working happier not harder. And as long as progress is being made so will mistakes. But it’s the fun, enjoyment and anticipation of a goal or dream that’s far more exciting, than the goal or dream itself. Continue reading →
Writers write! Singers sing! Actors act! Painter’s paint!
Perfectionism is the weed that thinks it’s a flower. So, lets waste no more time striving for it!
When you find the right person to be accountable to, your commitment and success ratio will increase considerably.
As long as you don’t give up! And never repress your dreams as unachievable right now.